Under the proposed scheme of arrangement, the shareholders of Western Australia-based HBS would receive 0.844 new BoQ shares and $2.80 in cash for every HBS share they own.
HBS’s board of directors has recommended the scheme to shareholders and, subject to shareholder, court and regulatory approvals, should be finalised by January 2008.
“The time between the initial approach by BoQ to announcement of the proposed scheme was very short,” said Blakes’ lead partner Roger Davies.
“It was imperative that we were able to efficiently identify, work through and document complex issues within a very short timeframe.”
HBS’s shareholders will own about 20 per cent of the new group if it goes ahead.
The market capitalisation of the merged group will be around $2.6 billion, after HBS’s $500 million is added to BoQ. HBS will also add another 126,000 customers, and 29 extra branches in Western Australia.
HBS chairman, Tony Howarth will move to the board of BoQ should the deal go ahead. “We have a shared vision of being a genuine alternative to the big banks and by joining with BoQ, we can be an even more competitive force in the West Australian banking sector,” he said in a statement to the ASX.